WASHINGTON TERRACE — It's not a bad shot if it leads to garbage points. That sounds about right.
Box Elder struggled through a rough shooting night, but capitalized on the offensive glass with numerous second chance points to grind out a 54-48 win against Bonneville on the road Wednesday night to start off tough region play on the right foot.
"A win on the road in this region is special and we're 1-0," Box Elder coach Keith Mecham said. "Our league, I know a lot of people from Salt Lake probably don't know much about it, maybe don't even care — everybody is in love with region 6 and they should be because they're phenomenal, but I'll tell ya it's going to be a battle down here. So if we get road wins — it's special."
Box Elder (4-3) was considered a large underdog heading into a hostile environment against Lakers (5-2), and came out a bit jittery on both sides of the ball. Late in the first quarter, Bonneville's Jaden Welsh connected on consecutive shots from downtown to take the early lead.
Mecham called a timeout immediately after the second three hit nylon and instructed his players that Welsh had unlimited range and that the extended pressure was necessary.
The advice worked.
"We tried to play a little zone and (Jaden) Welsh came out and hit two threes," said Mecham, "After we dealt with knowing who we needed to guard then defensively we were very sound."
After the adjustment Box Elder would outscore Bonneville 36-19 over the course of the two ensuing quarters — with a large majority of the points coming from second chance opportunities.
"When you take care of the ball and outrebound your opponent then I think good things happen."
The Bees got the job done without their leading scorer Brant Mecham, who came into the contest averaging nearly 20 points per game. Filling the shoes were Justus Brown and Chad Talbot who controlled the defensive tempo and continuously came up with monster offensive put-backs.
Talbot led all scorers with 15 points while Brown added eight points. Box Elder also got quality minutes from freshman Shad Watson at point, who finished with 11 points — most of which came from the free throw line while the game was still in question.
"Well I think we've got a good team and I think that we have guys that can play. It's going to take more than Brant (Mecham) to win games. We had different guys come in and play and I think we're a deeper team than we have been in past years. "